The Next Convening of the Four Winds is scheduled for September 6-8, 2024 

For more information Contact Jimbo or Nancy Simmons, Southern Hosts or


In Oklahoma alone, there are thousands of miles of fresh water that run through the territories of 39 tribes and non-tribal communities on its way to neighboring states. That water is under threat from many sources including fossil fuels, mining, dewatering, industrial agriculture and other toxic industries. There are many solutions to the water crisis, but all of them require us to come together regionally as water protectors and share those solutions. On Mother’s Day in 2021, the Pa’thata Women’s Society of the Ponca tribe of OK held a Water Ceremony on Ponca powwow grounds to recognize the Rights of Rivers that flow from upstream from Nebraska, through Ponca lands, and down through the state and beyond. In July of 2022, the Ponca Business Council unanimously adopted the “Immutable Rights of Rivers” into tribal law, vowing to protect , Ní’skà, (the Arkansas River) and Ni’ží’dè,(the Salt Fork River) that give life to all living things. No Ponca family is untouched by fossil fuel-related illnesses and deaths. Ponca Chairman Oliver Littlecook says, “Politicians and Big Oil call it ‘economic progress’. The Ponca call it ‘environmental genocide’. We can do better for our communities without sacrificing the water.”

Not all tribes and communities agree on the role of fossil fuels and heavy industry, but we can all come together to protect the water. Sparked by the wisdom of Indigenous women including Casey Camp Horinek, the late Joye Braun, Pennie Opal Plant and others, the plan came together to host 4 regional gatherings representing the 4 Directions (or Winds) to Listen to the Waters Speak.

The first gathering was hosted by the Ponca Nation of Oklahoma, September 21-22, 2022 on the Fall Equinox. Well over 100 mostly Indigenous water protectors from the Plains region and beyond gathered bringing water from their lands to share in a powerful Water Ceremony, and to share strategies for water protection. We laid down prayers for the Water and trusted that the waters would bring tribal people from other Nations to host the next Convening. Details are below. If you are in need of a scholarship please make sure to fill out the bottom of the registration form. 


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